If you have been waiting for your business to get a little bigger before you start using data analysis to make decisions, wait no longer. Data is all around us in this digitally driven world today, and companies need to use it to grow, and stay ahead of their competition. Small businesses benefit just as much as large companies when they use evidence gathered with today’s smart data analytics technologies. They get the answers they need for better decision making, improved productivity, new streams of income, and new growth opportunities. Making decisions in business, large or small, doesn’t have to be a guessing game any more. You don’t have to wait for your company to grow on its own, you can make it happen, faster and more accurately, with business data analytics.
What, exactly, can data analytics do for small, data-driven businesses?
Alright, so “everybody” says that a small business will benefit from using business intelligence, big data, analytics, and data management. But, how? Let’s look at some of the details.
First of all, these data-driven companies perform better. The data points to areas and processes that will benefit from downsizing, or streamlining through waste reduction. Waste could be anything, like inefficient use of staff time, unnecessary expenses, ineffective customer services, or profit loss. Simply by making smarter decisions based on your data, you can spend where you need to, and cut back in other areas that are draining your resources. Staff placement, and their work hours can be optimized. And, perhaps most importantly, data helps companies gain a better understanding of their customer and the market. You will be better equipped to know your customers’ buying and supply preferences so you can cut down on unnecessary services or products, meaning less waste and more profit.
Another advantage to using business data analytics is for a company to gain valuable insight into the best decisions for the present, as well as future health of the business. Knowing what is possible in the future will drive growth, and innovation and allow a company to stay ahead of competition, and provide services and products that people need, or want. Through the use of big data, companies gain the ability to harness the power of social media, to use customer experiences for service optimization. Also, data analysis provides focus for marketing campaigns. When a company knows exactly who their target audience is, campaigns are more effective.
Finally, data-driven companies are more profitable. Because of their ability to make better predictions, and ultimately, better decisions, improvements lead to higher profit potential.
How do small companies get started using business data analytics?
Your business, no matter what size, can leverage the power of its data with the right tools. Business intelligence (BI)uses tools, such as applications, infrastructure, and software, that will help you collect and analyze data from your company’s website, from your accounting statistics, and from your customer relationship management systems (CRMs). These tools will then turn the collected data into comprehendible reports which give your company the information and insight for the efficient decision making that you need to raise profits, and have long-term business success.
How do you choose the right business intelligence tools for your company?
Because you need the right tool to help you make decisions for your business, you should look at some of the most important criteria before choosing an analytics tool:
- What integration options will you have? Because you must be able to collect data from multiple systems and enter it into one tool, the integration abilities must be considered. Also, remember that in the future, you may have additional sources. To make integration smoother, a good tool should have a large number of connectors making integration possible.
- Your tool should be easy to use. Look for a drag and drop interfacing which suits different levels of technical abilities across your workforce..
- Find a tool that has customizing dashboards. The ones with widgets, for example, allow customization for the various areas of operation.
- Think about your future. You want a tool that allows room to grow right along with your company.
- Prices and commitments. Make sure that you understand the details when it comes to subscription, licensing, number of users, integrations, or customizations (are they included or extra), and all additional hardware requirements, before you make a commitment.
What business data analytics tool would work for your growing business?
Now you know why you need to be a data-driven business, and what analytic tools can do for you. So, let’s take a look at some of the tools successful business, small and large, are using today to make sense out of their data, and to optimize their decision making and potential for growth and innovation.
Sisense Sisense is BI software that helps businesses collect, analyze, and see their data on a dashboard that uses the drag and drop function. The dashboard, and reports are easily shared across the company. Sisense boasts about its flawless data processing and performance which give your company satisfaction, and results in data analysis. They use subscription based pricing. Sisense software covers any industry from healthcare to finance.
Tableau Using Tableau, companies can connect with PCs or iPads. They have the capability to view and share all their data with multiple users. Tableau users can create their own dashboards, and use all the functions without having specialized technical knowledge. The easy to use, intuitive software implements the drag and drop function. The app includes a native mobile app so you can take your business with you anywhere, inside or outside the office.
In today’s digital world, successful companies are using data to become more profitable, achieve better performance, increase their market share, and improve day to day operations. Don’t wait for your business to grow before you start your journey to becoming a data driven company. Let business intelligence help you grow now. Make data analytics be your next strategic move toward the future.